The Jones House 2019 Indoor Concert Series kicks off this weekend with performances by a Cajun fiddle duet and an old-time string band trio, and the events continue on Tuesday night with a concert of local ballads, songs and tunes.
On Saturday, February 16, Cajun fiddlers Joel Savoy and Lindsay Young, along with the old-time string band trio of Brett and Pan Riggs with William Ritter, will fill the Jones House Cultural and Community Center with music with 2:00 p.m. workshops followed by the concert at 4:00 p.m. Savoy and Young are from southern Louisiana and have been playing fiddle together for many years in various bands and combinations. Savoy grew up in one of the most famous Cajun music families, with musical parents and brother. His father, Marc Savoy, is a famous accordion builder and player, and his mother, Ann Savoy is a musician, author, and producer. Joel Savoy returns to the Jones House for the second time with Young to give the High Country a taste of the southern Louisiana fiddle flavor.
The Riggs and Ritter trio includes William Ritter on fiddle, Brett Riggs on banjo, and Pan Riggs on guitar. Brett and Pan are veterans of the old-time music community in North Carolina, making their home in the Raleigh-Durham area. Ritter grew up in Mitchell County and has spent many years learning the traditional tunes and songs of western North Carolina. He also writes songs rooted in traditional music styles. The old-time trio will host the 2:00 p.m. workshop, which is free an open to the public to attend with an RSVP to the Jones House. The trio will also start the concert at 4:00 p.m., followed by a set from Savoy and Young.
The concert on February 19 will begin at 7:30 p.m. and feature a trio of singers and musicians who carry on important local traditions. The performance will begin with acclaimed ballad singer, Bobby McMillon, a North Carolina Folk Heritage Award recipient. McMillon has spent his lifetime collecting local songs and regional variations. He has been featured in numerous books and films about old songs, and he has one of the most expansive repertoires of any living singer.
Beech Mountain tradition bearer, Rick Ward, will also sing some very local ballads, in addition to playing the mountain-style fretless banjo in the “double-knock” style that his grandfather played. Rick plays on a banjo that his grandfather started building before Rick and his father finished it. Rick will talk about the instruments, songs, and tunes that were shared in his family and the Beech Mountain and Beech Creek communities of Watauga and Avery counties.
Mountain City-born, Kenny Price, will also perform in the February 19 concert, sharing songs and tunes he learned from his father, “Fiddlin'” Fred Price. Fred Price was a musical companion of Doc Watson and Clarence “Tom” Ashley. Kenny got to learn a lot of music from his father, and he also spent time with Ashley. Kenny will demonstrate songs and tunes from his father and Ashley in his own left-handed style.
Tickets for the concerts are $20 each, and advanced reservations are also recommended, since the concert space is limited to the first 40 RSVPs – although open seats will be available for purchase at the door on the day of the concert.
The event is being produced by the Town of Boone’s Cultural Resources Department and is sponsored by Black and Global Roots Concerts, The Town of Boone, Appalachian State University, and the National Endowment for the Arts.
The workshops and concert take place in the Jones House in downtown Boone, located at 604 W. King St. To make a reservation for the concert or workshop, please contact Mark Freed at [email protected] or call 828.268.6280. To find out more information about the Jones House Cultural and Community Center and the indoor concert series at the Jones House, please visit www.joneshouse.org.